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Question
Posted by: Kim | 2011-01-11

Working Mom, Wife - am I jealous??

I am feeling lots of resentment towards my husband ever since a close friend of mine quit her job to stay at home with her son. Her story is similar to mine, we both married and have one child. We got along pretty well both working Mom’ s (had a lot in common) until she left her job. I don’ t know if this is jealously I am feeling towards her but its affecting me big time. I still have to work my child goes to aftercare and when I get home its such a rush to get everything done and I’ m resenting my husband because I feel he cannot provide for us as my friends husband provides for them. I know my husband suspects I feel this way as I’ m always making comments, (but he does not say much as he cant help the situation and I know this for a fact) I know its petty but I cant help myself, I feel like a stupid teenager my gosh I am 30, but why cant I be happy for her instead I look at what she has and what she does and compare to what I don’ t. Please Doc help me put this in perspective and other ladies in similar situation (if any) out there please advise. I am not a bad jealous witch or am I?????????

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

What might you feel jealous about ? That she apparently can afford to stay at home and not work ? It's very sad to make your husband feel bad and inadequate if he is doing his best to support the family but just can't earn as much as the other husband can. And look around, and you'll easily see single mothers struggling far more than you do. Maybe your husband should help a bit more with child-case and household chores ?
Good respopnses from other readers. As Liza says, for instance, the stay-at-home mom doesn't have a blissfully easy life, either. And Gracie elegantly illustrates that point.
Maria illustrates the law of nature that Work expands to fill the time available. There are always so many chores I expect to get done over the Christmas Holidays, but things always conspire to ensure I get NONE of them done.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Kim | 2011-01-17

Thank you Cammy, really appreciate it.

Reply to Kim
Posted by: Cammy | 2011-01-17

Wow, this sounds like it was written about me! Who knows, perhaps it is.

I''m a stay at home mom, yes I feel very fortunate to be in this position. I have a very easy life, I guess you could say I''m spoilt. I have no stresses in my life as my husband takes care of everything. He pays me a ''salary'' every month and I can basically do what I want with my money. I never have to ask him for money, and even when I need money, there is no issue as I basically get whatever it is I want. I have all the material things you could imagine, but that is not important to me. What car I drive is not important to me either. I would like to think of myself as a humble person. I''m not a flashy person... I hardly wear jewelry, I don''t own the latest Iphone/Blackberry, but if I wanted these things I could easily get them. I often forget how lucky I am to have my husband, but don''t think for a second we don''t have our problems. He works extremely hard, long hours, some days he would come home and our child would be in bed already. So he doesn''t get the quality time with our child that he deserves. He runs 2 businesses and even when he gets home at night he has the other business to take care of, it never ends. When I go to bed at night, he''s still busy working, and often the stress comes between us. We argue a lot, but we love each other very much. I know he is doing this for us, and offering up his time and himself to afford us this lifestyle. But there are times when I feel lonely, I go to bed alone most nights, as he''ll be up doing reports and work on his PC till late at night. On weekends he tries to spend as much time as possible with us and we try to get away as much as possible.
I understand why you feel jealous, Kim. But don''t be fooled by thinking this life is so perfect. Dealing with my child 24/7 is hard work and there have been days when I felt like getting a job, because listening to constant whining and dealing with temper tantrums can drive you insane. My husband is not around much to help with my child, but when he is there he does help out.
So I am not saying my situation is exactly that of your friend''s, but just remember nobody''s life is perfect. Be happy with what you have, there are so many people that are in worse situations than yourself, people that can''t find work, who can''t keep relationships, who are sickly. You are married, have a child (how many people out there can''t conceive), your life sounds pretty normal to me. It''s so easy to fall into this trap... of wanting more in your life and not being happy with what you have. Remember you create your own happiness. Count your blessings because you don''t know what you''ve got till it''s gone.

Reply to Cammy
Posted by: Wam | 2011-01-11

Lots of ladies are struggling to be in relationships, so love your hubby and appreciate him, you are blessed to be in a marriage, have a house and kids. I just got married and have been struggling to conceive, my hubby and I. Both salaries are not that ok, we still renting a town house and I love him to bits. He is my pillar of strength despise finacial issues.

Reply to Wam
Posted by: Kim | 2011-01-11

Thanks Mel, will show hubby some appreciation asap.
Got this quote in my head " Life''s too short to be anything but happy"  truly is, no more negative thought.

thanks again ladies

Reply to Kim
Posted by: Mel | 2011-01-11

I am happy you feel better Kim.......But remember something, you say they seem perfect....... you not with them 24/7, you don''t know if she is as happy as she seem to be. Who knows what happens behind closed doors. We all have our moments in our marriages...... No one is perfect, no husband nor wife is perfect. I find these rich people to be very unhappy. They seem to be happy and perfect, and they have all these earthly possessions, but no love. Maybe not in your friend''s case, but how sure are you that they are perfect. Appreciate your husband and tell him how much you appreciate him. He must be feeling like such a looser , coz he is unable to “ provide”  for his family. Good Luck and remember you just might have much much more than your friend.

Reply to Mel
Posted by: Kim | 2011-01-11

She does not have to ask him for a thing as he gives her everything, shops like a queen.
So I guess she''s just darn lucky!!!

Reply to Kim
Posted by: Kim | 2011-01-11

Wow –  this is not at all the response I was expecting, thank you for making me feel normal, really thought I was being such a cow about this.

She does however seem to have it all, I know her very well. Her husband can afford to pay her the salary she was getting while working, she has a beautiful home, nice car which he pays for and no his not a cheat or anything horrible like that they seem perfect.

But you know what you ladies made me realize today its good for her to have it all, I am happy with my untidy home, washing piling up, bills that I just manage to pay every mnth (nope cannot afford to stay home or even half day, salary just wont be enough), husband that’ s not perfect and I know never will be but once upon a time he was all I’ ve ever wanted.

Reply to Kim
Posted by: michelle | 2011-01-11

I would not want to be in her position unless I am rich on my own an can afford to stay at home because I want to. what happens if her husban leaves her?? takes everything and doesnt support her anymore?? Only stay at home if you can afford to support yourself and your child on your own.

I think its stupid to envy your friend because she has to rely on her husband to give her things...what about when she wants money for her own personal things??she has to ask him?? Oh NO !!! I will not be able to do that.

Be proud that you are contributing, give your husband a break.

Reply to michelle
Posted by: Happiness | 2011-01-11

Kim,

What works for me when I''m jelous of someone, I just tell them. I accept that I''m envious and jelous, I congradulate them for what they have. After doing that I somehow I find that I nolonger obsess about it.

Tell your hubby how you feel about your friends'' situation but don''t have any resentment against him. He''s not to blame for your feelings. Remember we own our feelings.

This too shall pass

Reply to Happiness
Posted by: Purple | 2011-01-11

We all feel jealous from time to time, and when we see someone else lucky enough to be able to spend more time with their children when we can''t, of course it makes us feel bad.

Can you perhaps afford to do without some luxuries and look for a half day job?

I''m sure the feelings will pass with time.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Maria | 2011-01-11

Kim I understand where you are coming from. A couple of years ago a colleague and friend of mine managed to get her working hours reduced to 5 hours a day in order to spend more time at home. I really envied her. Now her husband is struggling to get a business off the ground and they are financially stressed. 18 months ago I managed to get the same reduction for myself. I was hoping for more time for my studies, daughter, hobbies... in practice I have very little extra time for myself but I do spend more time with my child. Money is tight some months though... I can no longer be as generous as I used to be.

Your feelings are entirely normal. There are always people better off and worse off than you are.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: Gracie | 2011-01-11

I think there are many, many women out there who would love to be in her position, to be able to stay home to look after a child etc. I am sure your husband tries as hard as he can to make life as comfortable as possible (within his means) for you. I am 48 yrs old and have a 12 year old son who I would love to be able to fetch from school and help with his homework, but there is no way I could ever afford to do that. His cousin is 15 yrs old, has a stay-at-home mother, but they battle financially as the mother does not want to work, there is a constant war in that household about the expenses and the shortage of money and her husband resents her for not wanting to go out and find a job. She has all the excuses under the sun ... the position is too far, the salary not enough, the hours too long etc. there is always a weak excuse for her not to work. When I look at our situation and compare it to theirs, I am glad that I have to work to assist my husband with the living expenses, we never fight about money and my husband appreciates me for what I do in the home after work and over weekends. It is a different situation altogether when the mother can stay home because the father earns enough to support the whole family. The way I see it, I don''t want to ask my husband for money everytime I want something, I want to be able to use my own money to buy what I want. Maybe you are feeling a bit jealous about the fact that you are still working and she is now at home, but you need to realise that this is maybe not the time for you to be able to be at home and maybe give your husband the support that he needs and not make him feel guily that you are not in the same situation that your friend is in. Your time will come, but in the meantime just be supportive of your husband and does make him feel any less of a man because he cannot give you what your friend''s husband gives her! That is just my opinion ... good luck I hope you feel better and more positive about this soon.

Reply to Gracie
Posted by: Liza | 2011-01-11

Yes you''re jealous. That does not however make you a bad person. You just need to put it into perspective. Being a stay-at-home mom can be a full-time, unpaid and highly stressful job. It can cause constant money worries - frequently it means that luxuries need to be scaled down. There is also almost no sense of accomplishment when keeping the house clean and hardly any thankyou''s for a job well done. Having no income means that you have to ask your husband whenever you need money. This can cause resentment because men and women have different priorities and a husband might think that his wife is ''wasting'' money.

There are positives and negatives in any situation. You seem to be only seeing the positives...

Reply to Liza
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011-01-11

What might you feel jealous about ? That she apparently can afford to stay at home and not work ? It's very sad to make your husband feel bad and inadequate if he is doing his best to support the family but just can't earn as much as the other husband can. And look around, and you'll easily see single mothers struggling far more than you do. Maybe your husband should help a bit more with child-case and household chores ?
Good respopnses from other readers. As Liza says, for instance, the stay-at-home mom doesn't have a blissfully easy life, either. And Gracie elegantly illustrates that point.
Maria illustrates the law of nature that Work expands to fill the time available. There are always so many chores I expect to get done over the Christmas Holidays, but things always conspire to ensure I get NONE of them done.

Reply to cybershrink

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